The 5:2 diet is currently the most popular diet around – the basic principle is eating normal for five days while the other two you restrict calories to 500-600 per day. So, it’s probably more of an eating rather than an actual diet. There are no actual food requirements of what you can and can’t eat but of course you should ideally be making healthy choices, if your goal is to maintain or lose weight. A lot of people prefer this way of eating as it means they are not constantly counting calories.
If you are short on time and you cannot handle preparing specific meals and juices, it’s quite an easy eating pattern to get used to. You eat pretty much what you like within reason, still relatively healthy of course. Its recommended to eat a ‘normal’ number of calories five days a week and for two days that don’t have to be consecutive, you eat just 25 per cent of your usual calorie total which is on average 500 for women and 600 for men.
The ease of the diet and the fact you can eat pretty much what you like five days a week, are key to its popularity. Dieters are recommended to consume a ‘normal’ number of calories five days a week and then, for two, non-consecutive days, eat just 25% of their usual calorie total - 500 calories for women and 600 for men.
Even though there are no restrictions on the types of food you eat, obviously we would encourage you to have a diet rich in raw, living, plant-based foods if your goal is to reach optimal health. This eating pattern is not a diet but a simple adjustment to your way of life which will help achieve long term weight loss.
Benefits of Calorie Restriction and Intermittent Fasting
- Improving brain function
- Reducing the risk of heart disease, stroke and cancer
- Improving cholesterol levels and blood-sugar control
During your low-calorie days, you may experience symptoms similar to detoxing such as headaches and dizziness, to combat this make sure you hydrate yourself with lots of water and herbal teas. On the days where you reduce your calorie intake make sure you eat nutritious options such as fruit, vegetables and wholegrains. Avoid fasting on two consecutive days - instead break your week up, for example, by fasting on Monday and Thursday - this helps prevent tiredness and low energy.
If you’re struggling to lose that extra 3kgs, or just looking for a way to kick-start a health journey, the 5:2 diet is a really great way to reset your body and make you think effectively about how you eat.